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I’m frustrated

Default Position of Notes on Person Page

I am a CSM at the FHL, and would like to suggest that you switch the default position of Life Sketch with Notes on the Person Page of the Tree. First of all, we have never personally known the vast majority of people in our ancestry; therefore, the only life Sketch we can provide is a summary of the information right there on the Person Page. If we do have some interesting information about their lives, the Memories section is an appropriate place to put it. But even more importantly, there are often times when I run across things in my research on an individual or family that I want the next person to know about when they come to that page. Many people never make it to the bottom of the page. Often I am researching the family of a spouse of a blood relative, and realizing that I'm getting too far off my line, but I want to alert the next researcher to potential problems or tell them where to find some especially important information in a particular record. Sometimes I want them to beware of a possible non-duplicate, and help prevent them from merging two separate individuals that look like the same person. I think by putting the Notes at the top of the Person Page we can steer future researchers on that page in the right direction, help prevent duplication of effort, and alert them to potential errors and problems. I have set my Settings in this way, but it frustrates me to know that when other people come to do further research on people I have worked on, my Notes to alert them will be at the bottom of the page and may very well go unnoticed.
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  • Hit that little gear icon at the upper left and hamburger menus shows up on the different panels. Cna you can drag them any order you want.
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  • Right you can change the order for your own view but I think what Patricia is asking for is that the universal default be changed. I think Discussions and Notes should at the head.
    • I don't want Notes at the head - too often full of JUNK. Neither should the Discussions, either - so many are old and have not been deleted after corrections had already been made years earlier.

      Like Joe Martel says, each panel is move-able to your taste. I moved Lifestory and Labels below personal and other information to get them out of way so I can work on editing to clean up without too much dragging up and down.
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  • 1
    For many of us, we would need to be able to reset our settings to see what the default is. Regardless of the default, it is up to each patron to adjust the settings to their preferences. Changing the default only establishes the initial setting.

    I am not sure what the original patron is looking for, because once a patron modifies their settings, it goes with them regardless of what computer/browser is being used.
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  • 5
    I am for having the "Life Sketch" right where it is. I was having problems with my ancestor until I added his "Life Sketch." Now others are not so willing to add him and his wife into their line of ancestry since I added his life sketch.
    • Don

      I totally agree with you.

      Please have the "Life Sketch" at the "Top" of the 'Person Page' of an individual / person in the 'Default' View.

      And, 'Yes', I have added "Special" ( Short ) "Notes" at the start of the 'Life Sketch', if I want other Users / Patrons to be aware of or know about some important information about an Ancestor, so they go changing things without consideration. It does not always help; but, at least I have tried.

      I do not believe that the "Special" ( Short ) "Note" detracts form the purpose of the 'Life Sketch'; but, I am certain many Users / Patrons will consider that it does.

      My only dismay is that the, 'LABELS' ( Attachment 'Tool' ) section, which is currently at the "Top" of the 'Person Page' of an individual / person, should be "Moved" ( ie. "Relocated" ) to the "Bottom" of page, as in the "Beta" ( ie. "Test" ) Environment, as I eluded to at https://getsatisfaction.com/familysea...

      Brett
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  • 1
    Ideally we need a header section that will always be the top section. Allow the user to organized the other sections in any order they want like the current system. The new header section could be named “Notice” or “Alerts or “Heads-up”, whatever.

    The new section would fulfill the need to have some way of communicating critical information at the top and not be hidden lower on the page or buried from the sight of a less diligent user, while still allowing Life sketch and the other sections to be used as intended.

    This new “Notice” section would allow for bullet points like, Possible missing child between Ada and Adie, see discussion section for more detail; Caution do not merge this record with CDRY-3DT, see critical details in discussion below; Potential problem abcd see key information in the notes for xyz source, etc
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  • We spend a great deal of time in the Family History helping patrons deal with merges that should not have been done only to have they read the notes section to find there was a reason the merge should not have happened.

    I really like this idea.
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  • Chas, interesting idea, but isn't that already there?

    There is a frequent banner "notice" telling us that the sytem will be down for update at midnight. Research Helps advises us of missing children, etc.

    The discussion itself would contain those critical details - although it seems rarely used. How would the system 'know' what potential problem abcd IS?

    I have modified my setting to place discussions and notes at the top (like Tom, I'm not sure off hand what the default set up is, until I try to help someone else.)

    I fear the 'less diligent' will continue until another idea is promoted to catch their attention, but I guess your "new notice" might not hurt.
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  • Instead of a separate "Notices" section, could individual Notes be marked as "always at top/highlighted" (kind of like how some message boards can mark some messages as "sticky")?

    Thank goodness I haven't needed to do this (yet), but I can well imagine that after disentangling a profile from an incorrect merge or two, people would want to apply a neon-colored sticky note (surrounded by blinking lights) to prevent it from ever happening again. The problem is, where do you put your message? The general observation applies: people don't _read_, people _don't_ read, and _people_ don't read. If you put it in Life Sketch, then someone who's rearranged his default display with all the texty parts somewhere below the equator will never notice it. Ditto for putting it in a note: by default, they're at the very bottom where nobody ever goes, so again, most people will not notice.

    I can imagine two ways to set this up: either the individual note would always be at the top, just below the name, regardless of how the viewer had individualized the display, or there would be a symbol (perhaps not blinking, but highlighted in some way) somewhere in the box where the name and profile ID appear: "this profile has an important note, please read it". (The symbol would of course need to link to the note section to facilitate reading the important note.)
    • I prefer overkill ... I put the same message in "Life Sketch"; and, "Other Information"; and, "Discussions"; and, "Notes", if a User / Patron cannot see the message; or, chooses to ignore the message, then I have at least dome my best.

      As per the suggestion / enhancement from 'Chas' I would prefer that the Top section would be "immovable" and titled either “Notice” or “Alerts"; but, NOT, "Notes".
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  • I agree with Patricia Anderson, but for a different reason. When the Life Sketch field was introduced, it was placed at the top of the record. Users frequently use this field as a note field rather than for its intended purpose. I frequently encounter records with notes that have to be moved to the Note field or converted to linked sources.
    If it has to be displayed at all, I would rather see the default location of the Life Sketch field at the bottom of the Person display.
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  • Folks, you do realize that this thread is about the default position of the various elements on a person's details page.

    Patrons have the option to rearrange those elements in any way they choose. However, only they will see the layout as they have indicated it.

    So, do what you want. In my opinion. if a person wants a different layout, that's fine. It does not impact how I see the page.
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    • I understand that, but the arguments seem to not be about the default, but what people believe the layout should be -- for them.

      The default has to start somewhere. Personally, I like the Life Sketch at the top of the page because when the sketch is biographical in nature, it could be an interesting read for the relatives and should really be at the top.

      While I have also seen what are really notes or more than likely, discussion points, they really don't belong as part of the Life Sketch. But until FamilySearch comes up with how the various elements are to be used (and I haven't seen that) in some kind of official document (which FS is very bad at producing), I'm not doing anything about what someone else plugged into that element of the details page.

      In a way, this is like the Vital Records name field.

      My opinion is that this needs to be the earliest official name for the person. In the majority of cases, that will be the name assigned at or shortly after birth - the birth name. In the case of adoptions, it is the adopted name if the person's name changed.

      There are other instances where a person will have changed their name for whatever reason (we see this happening with celebrities -- Bob Hope is a good example).

      Which name goes in the Vital Records area?

      It is really anyone's call. I've seen some FS folks say that it is the name that they are most known by during their life. FS folks also say not to record names in all their variations (such as those found on census records) as alternate names, yet, if the name is in the census record, that is the name by which the person was known for at least that part of their life.

      So, not much is set in stone.

      In thinking about this, the best section to be at the top of the sections would be discussions, since they should be used like a forum -- for discussing different options -- collaborating with other contributors.

      Right now, discussions seldom have more than the original poster entering information into any given discussion.
    • Really going off on tangents of tangents, now. :-)

      1. The way FS FT is set up, the name under "vitals" should be the most recognizable one for that person. This way when you encounter a profile in an abbreviated form (on a tree view or on a relative's profile), you can still tell who the heck it is. (I use maiden names, but pretty much all of my ancestors were in Hungary, where a woman's married name is in some ways the least recognizable -- or at any rate totally non-individual -- version, being basically "Mrs. John Doe". This doesn't fit into the English-centric "first names - last name" setup, so I don't even try.)

      2. Censuses don't necessarily record a name a person was actually known by. They record what the enumerator thought he heard from the possibly-mistaken informant, using primarily the enumerator's ideas about spelling, and then later filtered through what the indexer and/or researcher could make out from his handwriting. As such, census-based spelling or name variations don't say anything much about the individuals named; they're evidence about the enumerator's education and habits. Like spelling variants and Latin forms of names from parish records, I believe they have no place under "alternate names".

      3. I agree that the discussions or notes (which really should be the same thing, because there's no practical difference in their usage) could use some promotion, but at the cost of what? I don't much use Life Sketch, being uninterested in essay-writing and generally preferring to let the facts speak for themselves, but in some ways a biography is more relevant to the individual than discussions about available records, so I'm reluctant to recommend relegating the sketch to total obscurity.

      And all this of course leaves aside the fact that the defaults are irrelevant to anyone who's bothered to explore the gear-symbol thingy. (Granted, that's probably a pretty small proportion of users. I certainly haven't.)
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